Usually, the Plus version of the Snapdragon chips improves performance nicely, and that’s it. The Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 breaks this habit and turns out to be a much better choice than the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1.
When we advise you on tech purchases, we always try to highlight the lines of demarcation that exist between one product and another. LCD or OLED screen for a smartphone or a television, fast or slow charging, rotation or torque sensor for an electric bike, etc.
This article pursues this goal by insisting on a very specific point: if you have to choose between a phone with a Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 or a Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1, always choose the 8+ Gen 1. We explain why.
It’s hot, it’s burning
At the start of the year, Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 quickly established itself as a power monster, shamelessly devouring its competitors on synthetic benchmarks. But there was one problem that all the tests revealed: the heating was quite annoying at best, unacceptable at worst.
Unfortunately, some smartphones that we tested paid the price. We also tend to be even more picky about chips in the high-end segment, as these are devices meant to be used over a very long time, given the investment they represent. .
However, a chip that heats up inevitably leads to a battery that heats up. And batteries don’t like it at all. It is the certainty of ending up with a device whose autonomy is greatly reduced after one or two years. In addition, the heat released by the chip brings another, even more pressing problem: in the event of a heat wave, for example, or if you use your phone to play games, it can simply become unusable. On products for 800 euros or more, this is a stain.
A little extra and everything changes
Fortunately, a suitor comes to get us out of this predicament. Its name: Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 (the difference is subtle). In the last few weeks we have started collecting tests of phones equipped with it. And the difference is noticeable to say the least.
Already, we easily notice that the Plus chip tends to show lower scores than the basic one. Judge instead with the OnePlus 10 Pro, under Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 and its counterpart, the OnePlus 10T under 8+ Gen 1.
|Model||OnePlus 10 Pro||OnePlus 10T|
|3DMark Wild Life||9659||REACH|
|3DMark Wild Life average framerate||57.80 FPS||REACH|
|3DMark Wild Life Extreme||REACH||2696|
|3DMark Wild Life Extreme average frame rate||REACH||16 FPS|
|GFXBench Aztec Vulkan/Metal high (on screen / offscreen)||59/47 FPS||60/47 FPS|
|GFXBench Car Chase (On Screen/Off Screen)||60/96 FPS||60/97 FPS|
|GFXBench Manhattan 3.0 (onscreen/offscreen)||60/229 FPS||60/218 FPS|
|Sequential read/write||1531 / 1207 MB/s||1637 / 1108 MB/s|
|Random read/write||66244 / 67250 IOPS||23462 / 67117 IOPS|
See more benchmarks
But whoever says lower scores is probably saying a chip that seeks less to outperform than to perform effectively. Of course, this is not an immutable rule, the Asus ZenFone 9 with 8 Plus Gen 1 dominates its world against the Xiaomi 12 Pro and another Oppo Find X5 Pro under 8 Gen 1.
|Model||Asus Zenfone 9||Oppo Find X5 Pro||Xiaomi 12 Pro|
|3DMark Wild Life||REACH||9771||7129|
|3DMark Wild Life average framerate||REACH||58.50 FPS||43 FPS|
|3DMark Wild Life Extreme||2776||REACH||REACH|
|3DMark Wild Life Extreme average frame rate||16.6 FPS||REACH||REACH|
|GFXBench Aztec Vulkan/Metal high (on screen / offscreen)||67/51 FPS||59/47 FPS||58/44 FPS|
|GFXBench Car Chase (On Screen/Off Screen)||89/103 FPS||60/95FPS||73/91 FPS|
|GFXBench Manhattan 3.0 (onscreen/offscreen)||119 / 258 FPS||REACH||121/233 FPS|
|Sequential read/write||1955 / 1453 MB/s||1558 / 1216 MB/s||1827 / 1444 MB/s|
|Random read/write||94123 / 125455 IOPS||74053 / 69400 IOPS||79899 / 105473 IOPS|
See more benchmarks
However, in all our tests, including that of the Galaxy Z Flip 4 and Z Fold 4, which are still being written, we see the best on heating, but also on autonomy, although it is difficult to distinguish the impact of the chip and the performed optimizations out of the manufacturers.
An anomaly that can be explained
Usually the Plus versions of Snapdragons don’t excite the crowds or the Tech editorial board that much. The Snapdragon 888 has never been overshadowed by its Plus version. This is due to the fact that Plus chips usually just increase the power a little without touching the architecture of the chip. Here Qualcomm turned to another foundry, TSMC instead of Samsung Foundry. And that seems to change everything.
How about 8 Gen 2
Reading all this, you might be wondering if this rule will apply to the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2? A fortiori, if you think you will be in a buying process for next year. Unfortunately, it is impossible to answer you at the time these lines are written. Qualcomm has yet to reveal its next batch of high-end chips.
If this fails, however, we can give you two things to follow closely. Already, the announcement of the next chip from Qualcomm will take place between November 15 and 17, which should allow you to see in the following days if the same problems appear. Other information to monitor: look closely at who is the founder of the chip, that is, the company responsible for manufacturing it in practice.
Rumor has it that it is TSMC. If that is the case, a priori, no worries on the horizon. The Taiwanese company’s manufacturing processes are generally reliable. If it’s Samsung Foundry, maybe wait to see the first tests before jumping on the first phone to come that will be equipped with 8 Gen 2. The possibility that we invite you to always read the tests (preferably those from Frandroid) before a major purchase.
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